Jun 12, 2024

Crime Increase?

 I subscribe to a crime reporting program that notifies me of crimes within x number of blocks from where I live....and usually there are three or four. This morning? 27.

That covers almost a month, and half a dozen were on retail/busy Fairview Avenue, but still...

   Assault
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE 3RD DEGREE
Incident #: 2024-00071999
400 BLOCK BURTON AVE  |  6/9/2024 @ 1:50 PM
Montgomery Police
   Theft / Larceny
THEFT 4TH - SHOPLIFTING LESS THAN $500
Incident #: 2024-00071701
400 BLOCK W FAIRVIEW AV  |  6/8/2024 @ 9:40 PM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
ASSAULT-DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - THIRD DEGREE - CRIMINAL MISCHIEF 3RD DEGREE
Incident #: 2024-00071304
3400 BLOCK CLOVERDALE RD  |  6/8/2024 @ 1:20 AM
Montgomery Police
   Theft / Larceny
THEFT 3RD - BICYCLE
Incident #: 2024-00072088
2500 BLOCK COLLEGE ST  |  6/7/2024 @ 9:45 PM
Montgomery Police
   Theft / Larceny
THEFT 4TH - SHOPLIFTING LESS THAN $500
Incident #: 2024-00071050
0 BLOCK W FAIRVIEW AVE  |  6/7/2024 @ 4:00 PM
Montgomery Police
   Theft / Larceny
THEFT 4TH - SHOPLIFTING LESS THAN $500
Incident #: 2024-00070484
1100 BLOCK CARTER HILL RD  |  6/6/2024 @ 10:37 AM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
DISCHARGING FIREARM INTO UNOCCUPIED BUILDING, RAILROAD, AIRCRAFT, AUTOMOBILE, TR
Incident #: 2024-00070420
1400 BLOCK E FAIRVIEW AVE  |  6/6/2024 @ 7:03 AM
Montgomery Police
   Fraud
THEFT OF SERVICES LESS THAN $500
Incident #: 2024-00070302
1300 BLOCK EDGAR D NIXON AV  |  6/5/2024 @ 9:30 PM
Montgomery Police
   Weapons
EXFELON IN POSSESSION OF FIREARM
Incident #: 2024-00069995
AUBURN ST  |  6/5/2024 @ 7:15 AM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
DISCHARGING FIREARM INTO OCCUPIED BUILDING, RAILROAD, AIRCRAFT, AUTOMOBILE, TRUC
Incident #: 2024-00069825
3400 BLOCK CLOVERDALE RD  |  6/4/2024 @ 5:00 PM
Montgomery Police
   Burglary
BURGLARY 3RD - RESIDENCE - FORCE
Incident #: 2024-00069262
1100 BLOCK FELDER AV  |  6/3/2024 @ 12:00 AM
Montgomery Police
   Burglary
BURGLARY 3RD -NON-RESIDENCE - FORCE
Incident #: 2024-00068525
3400 BLOCK S COURT ST  |  6/1/2024 @ 7:15 PM
Montgomery Police
   Burglary
BURGLARY 3RD -NON-RESIDENCE - FORCE
Incident #: 2024-00068236
300 BLOCK W FAIRVIEW AV  |  6/1/2024 @ 3:15 AM
Montgomery Police
   Theft / Larceny
THEFT 4TH - SHOPLIFTING LESS THAN $500
Incident #: 2024-00067977
0 BLOCK W FAIRVIEW AV  |  5/31/2024 @ 1:42 PM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE 3RD - SIMPLE ASSAULT
Incident #: 2024-00067769
800 BLOCK UNIVERSITY DR  |  5/31/2024 @ 6:09 AM
Montgomery Police
   Homicide
HOMICIDE-CAPITAL MURDER - IN PRESENCE OF CHILD UNDER 14
Incident #: 2024-00065705
900 BLOCK S UNION ST  |  5/26/2024 @ 3:30 PM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
DISCHARGING FIREARM INTO OCCUPIED BUILDING, RAILROAD, AIRCRAFT, AUTOMOBILE, TRUC
Incident #: 2024-00065462
3400 BLOCK CLOVERDALE RD  |  5/26/2024 @ 12:00 AM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
ASSAULT 1ST - NON-FAMILY - GUN
Incident #: 2024-00063955
3400 BLOCK NORMAN BRIDGE RD  |  5/22/2024 @ 5:57 PM
Montgomery Police
   Motor Vehicle Theft
THEFT 1ST - MOTOR VEHICLE
Incident #: 2024-00063821
3400 BLOCK S PERRY ST  |  5/22/2024 @ 11:28 AM
Montgomery Police
   Fraud
FRAUD-IDENTITY THEFT
Incident #: 2024-00063001
1200 BLOCK MAGNOLIA  |  5/20/2024 @ 4:35 PM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
CRIMINAL MISCHIEF 3RD- DAMAGE TO PRIVATE PROPERTY
Incident #: 2024-00062021
400 BLOCK MAURY ST  |  5/18/2024 @ 3:10 PM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
CRIMINAL MISCHIEF 3RD- DAMAGE TO PRIVATE PROPERTY
Incident #: 2024-00062121
3200 BLOCK CLOVERDALE RD  |  5/18/2024 @ 9:00 AM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
ASSAULT 1ST - NON-FAMILY - GUN
Incident #: 2024-00061863
1000 BLOCK E FAIRVIEW AV  |  5/18/2024 @ 3:20 AM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
DISCHARGING FIREARM INTO OCCUPIED BUILDING, RAILROAD, AIRCRAFT, AUTOMOBILE, TRUC
Incident #: 2024-00061317
400 BLOCK EARL PL  |  5/16/2024 @ 9:26 PM
Montgomery Police
   Assault
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE 3RD - COERCION / SIMPLE ASSAULT
Incident #: 2024-00061283
400 BLOCK EARL PL  |  5/16/2024 @ 8:09 PM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
CRIMINAL MISCHIEF 3RD- DAMAGE TO PRIVATE PROPERTY
Incident #: 2024-00060833
100 BLOCK MARSHALL ST  |  5/15/2024 @ 8:58 PM
Montgomery Police
   Vandalism
CRIMINAL MISCHIEF 3RD - OTHER
Incident #: 2024-00060816
1300 BLOCK ROSA L PARKS AV  |  5/15/2024 @ 8:20 PM
Montgomery Police


Jun 11, 2024

About Those Chinese Stabbings

 CNN concludes their story this way.....perspective:


"China has one of the lowest rates of violent crime in the world, partly due to its strict gun controls and powerful mass surveillance.

But it has continued to face mass stabbings in public places. In May, two people were killed and another 21 injured in a knife attack in a hospital in the southwestern province of Yunnan.

Last year, six people were killed and one injured in an early morning stabbing incident outside a kindergarten in southern Guangdong province. And a 2022 stabbing, also at a kindergarten, killed three and injured six in eastern Jiangxi province."

Big Day for Southern Baptists


 

 from an AP story:

At the SBC’s annual meeting June 11-12 in Indianapolis, representatives will vote on whether to amend the denomination’s constitution to essentially ban churches with any women pastors — and not just in the top job. That measure received overwhelming approval in a preliminary vote last year.

Leaders of First Baptist – which has given millions to Southern Baptist causes and has been involved with the convention since its 19th century founding — are bracing for a possible expulsion.

“We are grieved at the direction the SBC has taken,” the church said in a statement.

FULL AP STORY IS HERE.

 

Britt a No-Show for controvertial vote

 The Washington Post reports nine U.S. Senators failed to vote on a measure in supprt of a right to  contraception, including one of Alabama's.

Alabama's Katie Britt skipped the vote (one of nine GOP not voting)

Alabama's Tuberville voted against it (one of 39 GOP votes in opposition)

The Senate on Wednesday afternoon voted not to advance a bill that would create a federal right to access contraception. The procedural measure, which required 60 votes, failed as all but two Republicans present voted against it.

The legislation would have prevented states from passing laws that limit access to contraception, including hormonal birth control, intrauterine devices and other methods that prevent pregnancy. Democrats introduced the bill, in part, to put Republicans on the record on reproductive rights ahead of November’s elections.


Jun 10, 2024

Tuberville

 Headline from The Independent:


Lindsey Graham compares fellow Republican Tommy Tuberville to Nazi appeasers of the 1930s

US senator...(R) Alabama...takes aim at GOP allies of Trump who oppose Ukraine aid 

Full story is HERE.

One Week After Jefferson Davis' Birth Holiday

  

 

Let me recommend a column about the Davis Holiday by Bryan Lyman in The Advertiser. You can read it HERE.

 


Davis was the first (and only) president of the Confederacy. He was sworn in on the upper steps of The Alabama Capitol building, a spot marked by a copper star * at the front of The Alabama Capitol building.

 

 

(* the Daughters of The Confederacy marker uses the religious 6-point star, mostly considered the religious star symbol, "The Star of David".)

Jun 9, 2024

Still no action on the ship named for Alabama's Capital City

 

 

 

But reports as recently as last month named it as one of the ships to be decommissioned:

"...the Navy proposes to decommission the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Erie, the amphibious dock landing ship USS Germantown and two Independence-class littoral combat ships, the USS Jackson and USS Montgomery."

                                (Source: San Diego Union Tribune newspaper)

About blaming Montgomery criminals targeting nearby cities...

 

A reminder from a Montgomery Advertiser story. Sometimes it works the other way around:

"Since April 12, when Amy Dicks was shot and paralyzed while sitting at a red light on Atlanta Highway, community members have attended city council meetings demanding change. Five people were arrested in that shooting, all of whom were from the neighboring communities of Millbrook and Prattville."

Jun 8, 2024

Astronaut Dies in Plane Crash

Washington Post report:

William Anders, Apollo 8 astronaut who shot ‘Earthrise,’ dies in plane crash

Anders, part of the first crewed mission to orbit the moon, was 90. His photo of the Earth rising over the lunar surface is one of the most famous ever taken.

 <clip>

In a 2018 interview with the Guardian, Mr. Anders said the image changed him, too. “It really undercut my religious beliefs. The idea that things rotate around the pope and up there is a big supercomputer wondering whether Billy was a good boy yesterday? It doesn’t make any sense.”

 

This picture, taken by Apollo 8 astronaut Bill Anders, is one of the most famous images ever photographed in space. It shows the earth rising against the barren lunar landscape on the first human mission to the moon in 1968.FULL STORY IS HERE.

Never Too Late

 A Washington Post headline:

An ‘unlucky in love’ flamingo recently laid her first egg. She’s 70.

“Our entire team was amazed — Gertrude and her egg were the talk of the reserve,” said the manager of a British nature reserve.

Full story is HERE.

Center of Tornado Alley now closer to us

 

There's growing evidence that "Tornado Alley," the area of the United States most susceptible to tornadoes, is shifting eastwards, according to a recent study looking at tornado formation patterns. 

"Tornado Alley" is a shorthand term that has typically described the central Plains region of the United States, but according to the study, published in April in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, parts of the eastern U.S. now face the "greatest tornado threat." Tornado activity is now much more likely to impact the Midwest and Southeast, the study said. 

The shift has been ongoing since 1951, according to the study, which used information from two different datasets, each spanning 35 years, to determine where and when tornadoes have been forming. The study looked at tornadoes rated F/EF1 or stronger. (A tornado is considered EF1 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale if its wind gusts are estimated at 86-110 mph, based on the amount of damage. The scale runs from EF0 up to EF5 for the most damaging twisters.)

Maps of patterns of tornadogenesis, or the process by which a tornado forms, show that between 1951 and 1985, tornado formation peaked in northern Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. 

screen-shot-2024-06-06-at-12-23-32-pm.png
Where tornadoes began to form between 1951 and 1985. Coleman, Thompson and Forbes, 2024, JAMC. © American Meteorological Society. Used with permission. This preliminary version has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology and may be fully cited. The final typeset copyedited article will replace the EOR when it is published.

Another map shows that from 1986 to 2020, tornadogenesis peaked in Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama. Such events also were increasing further east, including Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. 

screen-shot-2024-06-06-at-12-22-08-pm.png
Where tornadoes began to form between 1986 and 2020, showing the shift in "Tornado Alley."  Coleman, Thompson and Forbes, 2024, JAMC. © American Meteorological Society. Used with permission. This preliminary version has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology and may be fully cited. The final typeset copyedited article will replace the EOR when it is published.

Tornadoes in the western part of the country decreased by 25% between those two time periods, falling from over 8,450 tornadoes between 1951-1985 to just over 6,300 between 1986-2020, the study found. During that same time, tornado activity in the eastern United States increased by 12%, growing from over 9,400 tornadoes between 1951-1985 to over 10,500 tornadoes between 1986- 2020. 

And it's not just the regions that are changing, according to the study: Tornadoes are increasingly likely to form in colder weather. Earlier this year, Wisconsin saw a tornado in February, a first for the state. 

Multiple deadly tornadoes have struck the U.S. this year, especially in the Plains and the Midwest. NOAA has confirmed 39 tornado-related deaths this year, including eight in each Texas and Oklahoma. On Wednesday, a 2-year-old was killed when a tornado in Michigan caused a tree to fall on a home. 

Damage was also seen in Maryland Wednesday from what may be the strongest tornado to hit the D.C. metro area since 1996.

CBS News senior weather producer David Parkinson said late May is typically a very busy time for tornadoes, but explained that climate change could be causing severe storms to occur more frequently. 

"We can't in any way call one tornado something that's attached to climate change, but we can say the pattern of which things are increasing and getting stronger, that likely is related to a warming world," Parkinson said.

Jun 7, 2024

Alabama Homicide Rate Increase

 


Alabama:  a 71% increase over the decade since 2012.

Source HERE

(Note: Mississippi increased 103%)

Jun 6, 2024

Boos for Heroes.

(From The Washington Post:)

"Two former law enforcement officers who defended the U.S. Capitol from rioters during the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection were jeered by state GOP lawmakers as they visited Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives on Wednesday, according to several Democratic lawmakers present."  FULL story is HERE.

The Jan. 6 insurrection - The Washington Post

Former U.S. Capitol Police officer Harry Dunn and former sergeant Aquilino Gonell were introduced on the floor Wednesday as “heroes” by House Speaker Joanna McClinton (D) for having “bravely defended democracy in the United States Capitol against rioters and insurrection on Jan. 6.”

As the two men — both of whom were injured by rioters on Jan. 6 — were introduced, the House floor descended into chaos. According to Democratic lawmakers, several GOP lawmakers hissed and booed, with a number of Republicans walking out of the chamber in protest.

Jun 5, 2024

Poor Grades


 

Forbes Reports:

"As online college and other alternative higher ed options have grown in popularity, standardized testing has become less important at the college level, with many colleges going test-optional. But high school students across the U.S. still take the SAT and ACT® to prep for college admissions.

At the K-12 level, standardized testing remains a vital metric for measuring students’ comprehension and competency in core subject areas like math, reading, writing and science. Standardized test scores provide primary and secondary school teachers and administrators with data-driven insights that inform curriculum development and shape educational policies and practices. These scores can also impact a school’s funding and resource allocation.

In this article, we rank the states with the highest standardized test scores and discuss the evolving role of standardized testing, including K-12 assessments and college entrance exams."

Bottom Five States

Mississippi, Alabama, West Virginia, New Mexico and Oklahoma ranked in the bottom five states for standardized test scores.

Various educational, economic and social factors influence these scores. For example, states with lower socioeconomic status may face challenges such as resource allocation to education or limited resources.

 

Alabama

Alabama ranked fourth-lowest on our list, with 27.17% of fourth graders demonstrating proficiency or above in math and 28.26% demonstrating the same in reading. These performance levels persisted through the eighth grade, dropping by 8.48% in math and 6.23% in reading. Notably, Alabama students earned higher average ACT and MCAT scores compared to Mississippi; however, their average SAT scores were lower.

Jun 4, 2024

What other kind IS there????

 FACT BASED JOURNALISM

The Neiman Lab has an interesting column about that phrase, concluding that there is no other kind of journalism. It's either fact based, or NOT journalism at all!

"The increasing usage of the term corresponds with the beginning of Trump’s presidency. Given this timing, we next conducted a parallel search of the term “fake news.” Our suspicion was that the term “fact-based journalism” arose in response to the rise of the notion of “fake news” that so dominated the discourse around journalism and politics during the Trump presidency. The results support our hypothesis.

HERE is the full report.

Jun 3, 2024

Southern Living's Friendliest Cities in The South

 

(And spoiler: NONE are in Alabama!


Top 15 friendliest cities in the South list

(Note: FIVE are in the Carolinas!

  1. Charleston, South Carolina
  2. Savannah, Georgia
  3. Greenville, South Carolina
  4. New Orleans, Louisiana
  5. Nashville, Tennessee
  6. Wilmington, North Carolina
  7. Asheville, North Carolina
  8. Franklin, Tennessee
  9. Lexington, Kentucky
  10. Lafayette, Louisiana
  11. Chattanooga, Tennessee
  12. San Antonio, Texas
  13. Austin, Texas
  14. Bentonville, Arkansas
  15. Cary, North Carolina

A N.Y. Times Photo Feature

 How could I NOT read a story that starts with this:

"Do Animals know they are going to die?"

The link is below, and you may need a N.Y. Times account to get to it. If so, let me suggest you pay for access.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2024/05/31/magazine/dog-animals-death-mortality.html


 Above: my longtime friend Karanel Ezpeleta, holding the newborn puppy she gifted to me. I named him Saki.

Both of them are gone, and I miss them.

Alabama Ranks 33rd in rating of state economies.

 



Wallet Hub crunched the data to rank the states, with The State of Washington ranked #1, and Mississippi ranked dead last....#50.

Alabama? 33rd.

 

Faith in the supermajority GOP Legislature?

 "It has been said and properly documented" (???) "that no man’s life, liberty, or property is safe when the Alabama Legislature is in session"

     From...a posting online by former Republican Alabama Secretary of State and former legislator John Merrill.

Today is a State Holiday.

Today is an Alabama State Holiday honoring Confederate President Jefferson Davis.


 It is one of THREE state holidays honoring the confederacy.


 

Jun 2, 2024

State Offices Closed Tomorrow

 It's another of those confederate holidays that only Alabama and a few other former Confederacy states commemorate. It honors Jefferson Davis' birthday. His statue is in front of The Alabama Capitol building.


 
A star (not the right one, but whatever...) on the steps leading up to the front doors marks the spot where he stood when he was sworn in.